The long awaited opening rounds of the MINI CHALLENGE Open class and Cooper classes is being held this weekend as part of the MINI Festival at Snetterton.

New for this year is the split of the former Cooper Class cars into 2 classes. The Cooper Pro Class running a 135 BHP 1.6ltr engine with a 6 speed BKD Gearbox mated to a competition clutch giving the cars great reliability without huge leaps in cost.

The Cooper AM class is the ultimate low cost start racing class with a normal 1.6lt engine and a standard gearbox. The minimum weight of the car is increased by 30Kg as well as limited suspension upgrades. This class is aimed at those new to racing.

The Open Class, racing separately is a class for Ex MINI CHALLENGE R53 and R56 Cooper S cars, along with Track day cars and Super Cooper Cup Cars. All competitors will be using Dunlop Direzza dry tyres and wet tyres. The cars power will be limited to 180BHP per ton.

The Snetterton 200 circuit suits these cars well with a great mix of bends and straights providing a great view for spectators.